Product Spotlight - PassPort 'Communal Tile' and 'Try Hard' Decks

by Dan Bunn

Everyone's favourite Aussies have come from a land down under to bring you two bangin' new series of decks to help you forget about the bleak reality of British winter.

Callum Paul gets himself into a tight spot, shot by Bruce Sliver - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store

Whether you've been paying attention to it or not, the Aussie skate scene has been seriously heating up recently with loads of Australian rippers making a name for themselves over here like Jack O'Grady, Rowan Davis, and newly-crowned Australian Skater of the Year, Rob Pace. PassPort's sister company, Hoddle, have been gaining attention on this side of the pond thanks to dancehall legend, Sean Paul, I mean, noseslide pop-out connoisseur, Shaun Paul, who has come out with countless bangers in the last few months, like his most recent 'NorthUnda' part for DC. If you saw Nike SB's 'Medley' video, or any of the subsequent Australian videos they've released, you'll be well aware of the new generation of insanely talented Aussies who are on the rise, so there's no better time to start showing your love for our cousins on the other side of the world, and what better way to do that than to get one of the latest decks from Australia's most beloved brand?

Jack O'Grady frontside nosebluntslide, photo by Sam Coady - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store
Photo: Jack O'Grady with a rugged frontside noseblunt, shot by Sam Coady.

If you're unfamiliar with PassPort, it's safe to say that you've been seriously missing out. The team boasts some of the most exciting names in Australian skating like Josh Pall, Callum Paul, and Jack O'Grady, alongside UK legend, Matlok Bennett-Jones, so you know their videos are gonna be packed with more hammers than Bob The Builder's shed. Featuring skating that's equal parts powerful and creative, PassPort's video offerings are supplemented by impeccable music selection, quirky animations, and strong homie vibes that are guaranteed to make you wanna round up the squad and hit the streets.

As usual, the latest run of PassPort decks features several different graphics compiled into two distinct series: the 'Try Hard' series, and the 'Communal Tile' series. First off, the 'Try Hard' graphic features PassPort's signature brand of illustration courtesy of artist Marcus Dixon. Dixon's iconic style of illustration has become synonymous with PassPort's identity with almost every drop featuring his artwork in some shape or form. His style of drawing has a nostalgic feel to it, reminiscent of old newspaper cartoons - both in the aesthetic and the use of humour - but with the addition of bold, contrasting colours which are guaranteed to catch your eye.

PassPort 'Try Hard - Dancer' 8.5" Skateboard Deck - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store

As you probably could've guessed, the overarching theme of the 'Try Hard' series is people trying too hard, like in the 'Dancer' deck which sees a man getting so into his dancing that he starts spinning his partner so fast that she basically turns into a tornado and sends both of their hats flying. Likewise, the 'Lover' deck features a man going to extreme lengths to be romantic, enshrouding himself within a rose, presumably to surprise his partner, only for the leaves to fall away leaving him blushing and desperately struggling to cover his exposed dangly bits. Something I'm sure all of us can relate to.

PassPort 'Try Hard - Lover' 8.38" Skateboard Deck - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store

Finally, the 'Wine' graphic features a bloke passing behind several empty glasses before joyfully grabbing a glass of wine. To be honest, I don't really get how this plays into the 'Try Hard' theme, it feels more like a 'glass half full' kinda vibe to me, which is possibly the first time in my life I've ever been optimistic.

PassPort 'Try Hard - Wine' 8.25" Skateboard Deck - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store

Next up, the 'Communal Tile' series features a range of designs inspired by PassPort's appreciation for the understated beauty of tiling - and I'm not just saying that, they've done a load of different series all based around tiles. Each deck features a collage of various different tiles which share some kind of common theme, with each deck being centered around the identities of the 'Grandma', 'Grandad', and 'Grandson'.

PassPort 'Communal Tile - Grandma' 8.5" Skateboard Deck - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store

Unsurprisingly, the 'Grandma' deck features tiles which share more feminine themes, with light blue and yellow hues, and various flowers appearing throughout. It basically looks like something your Nan would have on her favourite set of dinner plates but on tiles instead. In contrast, both the 'Grandad' and 'Grandson' decks feature harsher reds and oranges which connote a sense of danger in comparison to the delicate floral theme of the 'Grandma' deck. 

PassPort 'Communal Tile - Grandson' 8.25" Skateboard Deck - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store

The 'Grandson' deck is interspersed with foreboding images like a 'DANGER Thin Ice' sign, a pair of 'Dirty Hands', and a chain, which immediately evokes issues regarding employment. Likewise, the 'Grandad' deck features an image of a man walking with a cane - fitting in with the Grandad theme - as well as several crying baby faces and an image of Australia with a hole in the middle. Not sure what it all means but it looks cool so who cares?

PassPort 'Communal Tile - Grandad' 8.125" Skateboard Deck - CSC, Cardiff Skateboard Club - UK Skate Store
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